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12 Apr 2006

Need serious advise for marriage of 9 months
Getting married 2nd time in middle age has been very exciting and wonderful - but moving in together and combining his belongings and mine - NIGHTMARE. He was married for over 30 years and has "stuff" going way back - and he is sentimental about it all. Some have never left a cupboards for 20 years and others dozens of little ornaments have lined "their" shelves and gathered dust for years. ( I sold or gave away most of my furniture as it was cheap and old and never had loads of junk) He is a widower of 6 years and I have been divorced for 20 years and reared two children on my own. No children at home now so in that respect uncomplicated. He cannot throw anything away. It is a new beginning, new house, and I am looking forward to living life with him till death do us part. PROBLEM is that the house if filled with 90 % of his /their belongings and 20% mine and I feel as though I am living in his house not ours. How do I tactfully explain my feeling as he gets the sulks the minute I suggest that perhaps a 20 year faded table cloth is no longer needed. I really don't want arguments about materials things to drive a rift between us but it seems I don't know how to communicate the scenario to him.
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Expert
CyberShrink
cybershrink

01 Jan 0001

Changing habits is hard, so don't expect him to change his lifestyle too quickly. Be supportive and encouraging, and maybe things can work out. Marriage counselling could come in handy, too. As a widower, it may feel to him that it's betraying his dead wife to throw away any of their mementoes, and he may find it painful to part with them,. To you it's a 20 year-old faded table-sloth ; to him it may be the cloth they used for their anniversdaries, or for the kids birthdays.
And POP's comments are absolutely brilliant, and so sensible they ought to be printed up and handed out at second marriages !
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